News

Dawn Booker, Pack Light Global

Late last week, the U.S. State Department officially put a halt on international travel as we know it. It is recommending United States citizens stay home, amid this coronavirus pandemic.

The timing of that declaration meant I barely made it back from Morocco before its government suspended all international flights. I was travelling with a group of African American women on a once in a lifetime excursion.

Ben McKeown / For WUNC

Workers around the state say their employers aren't doing enough to protect them from the coronavirus pandemic.

That includes sanitation workers in Raleigh who are demanding that the city do more to protect them following the death of a colleague from COVID-19.

WUNCPolitics Podcast
WUNC

Gov. Roy Cooper ordered North Carolinians to stay at home for thirty days starting 5 p.m. Monday, March 30. Healthcare providers worried about being overwhelmed by COVID-19 patients cheered his decision. Businesses not necessarily. 

Meanwhile, lawmakers this week began meeting, telephonically, to consider things like how to provide tax relief and get money to all the people who are suddenly out of work because of the coronavirus crisis. 

From a safe social distance, Rob Schofield of the progressive NC Policy Watch and Becki Gray of the conservative John Locke Foundation, weigh in. 
 


Workers exit a large tent in front of the emergency room at EvergreenHealth Medical Center in Kirkland, Washington.
Ted S. Warren / AP

The worst-case scenario for COVID-19 is that hospitals become overwhelmed with patients. If too many people become seriously ill too fast, there won't be enough ICU beds and ventilators for everyone who needs them, public health officials nationwide are warning, which could cause many more deaths from the virus.

We're Number One

22 hours ago

The United States has overtaken China, Italy, and every other country in the world in the number of documented COVID-19 cases. It's a dubious and troubling honor, to be sure. And it caps a week unlike any before it, around the globe and here in North Carolina.

On a day when Governor Roy Cooper issues a statewide stay-at-home order, host Dave DeWitt speaks Rose Hoban, editor of North Carolina Health News, about how we will know when the curve is starting to flatten in the state.


Gov. Roy Cooper and members of the North Carolina Coronavirus Task Force will hold a briefing on COVID-19 updates. Watch live here starting at 4 p.m.

Graphic of a bed.
WikiHow

A solid eight hours can be hard to come by in our non-stop, tech-saturated world. But the modern science of sleep shows that shut-eye is just as critical as diet and exercise in shaping both mental and physical health.

https://twitter.com/ncgop

The North Carolina Republican Party's state convention is being delayed by three weeks due to the new coronavirus emergency.

Construction workers using Robotic-Assist Devices
Carolinas Associated General Contractors / Twitter

Groups that represent hospitals and doctors are pushing for Governor Roy Cooper to order a shelter-in-place.

But the North Carolina Chamber has said such an order should be a "last-ditch resort." And industries like real estate and construction want the governor to consider them essential during the coronavirus pandemic and allow them to keep running.

The N95 mask made by 3M
3M

Duke Health is now using recycled N-95 masks in its three hospitals amid a critical shortage prompted by the coronavirus pandemic.

The masks are being decontaminated through a process that was already being used to clean other medical equipment.

Duke Health's Raleigh Hospital
Duke Medicine

State health officials say North Carolina's hospitals are trying to manage bed capacity as states like New York and California see a surge of patients with COVID-19. 

State health Director Dr. Betsy Tilson said she's heard from about 75% of the 130 hospitals in North Carolina. Tilson says about half of their inpatient beds are available, and less than 20 percent of their Intensive Care Unit beds are open.

A young soccer fan poses for a photo in front of a giant inflatable soccer ball outside of WakeMed Soccer Park prior to the NCAA Women's College Cup final between Penn State and Duke in Cary, N.C., Sunday, Dec. 6, 2015.
Ben McKeown / AP

Wake County is now North Carolina's largest county, the U.S. Census Bureau said on Thursday as its annual population estimates show the county containing Raleigh surpassing Mecklenburg County.

The census said Wake County had an estimated 1,111,761 people as of July 1, with Mecklenburg close behind at 1,110,356. The July 2018 estimates by the census had Mecklenburg ahead of Wake by roughly 2,500 people.

Ben McKeown / For WUNC

North Carolina's capital county on Thursday added another 1.1 million state residents to those now or soon under stay-at-home orders to dampen the coronavirus spread, which state officials say has contributed to another death.

ThinkStock

 

The COVID-19 pandemic is having broad financial consequences, and college students are not immune to the effects.

Treatment

Mar 26, 2020

Today: Treatment.

Duke University Hospital has announced it is part of the first national study of a drug the World Health Organization has called "the only drug right now that we think may have real efficacy" to treat COVID-19.

That drug is Remdesivir. It was first developed at UNC-Chapel Hill's Gillings School of Global Public Health.

WUNC reporter Jay Price speaks to Dr. Cameron Wolfe, associate professor of medicine at Duke University and the lead investigator in the new study, about the Remdesivir trial and its prospects for treating COVID-19.


Pixabay

While North Carolina politicians ponder their role in the pandemic response, healthcare workers know they will be the first responders no matter what. That is why hospitals are pleading that state and local governments order people to shelter-in-place. 

PBS

After filming five seasons of the Peabody award-winning series, “A Chef’s Life,” Vivian Howard has the cameras pointed in a different direction — this time, away from her. While she is the host of her new show, “Somewhere South,” her role is more like that of a food ethnographer. 

Even as the number of COVID-19 cases in North Carolina climbs – and local governments begin issuing stay-at-home orders to contain further spread of the pathogen – evictions continue in some counties.

Census 2020
Census Bureau

The latest numbers from the U.S. Census Bureau show North Carolina lags behind most states in the percentage of residents who have been counted.

Bars, restaurants and other retailers have been shut down as people worldwide are asked to stay home until health experts can stem the growth of the global pandemic.
Ben McKeown / For WUNC

State legislators have gathered remotely this week as they consider ways to help North Carolinians affected by the coronavirus crisis. The first tele-meeting was held Wednesday, as lawmakers convened for the first time – from a distance – in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak.

children reading
U.S. Navy / Wikimedia Commons

Advocacy groups that lobby for the well-being of young children have written a letter to Governor Roy Cooper and N.C. Health and Human Services Director Mandy Cohen urging them to close all child care facilities.

Leaders of N.C. Early Education Coalition, NC Child, and N.C. Association for the Education of Young Children say that forcing employees of day-care facilities to work puts the health of kids, their families, and the workers themselves at risk.

NC Court of Appeals Building
Dave DeWitt

A North Carolina appeals court on Tuesday rejected a request by Republican lawmakers for its full cadre of judges to rehear a challenge over implementing voter photo identification.

The Court of Appeals denied the motion by the GOP legislative leaders. The lawmakers had asked that the entire court rehear questions considered by three of the court's 15 judges in a lawsuit challenging the state's December 2018 voter ID law.

Home

Mar 25, 2020

Today: Home.

Earlier today, Durham Mayor Steve Schewel issued a stay-at-home order for his city. A flurry of other counties and cities have issued similar orders in the past 24 hours.

But areas of our state are not being affected by Covid-19 in equal amounts. More than three dozen counties have no reported cases at all. So should the same rules apply to all of them?

We talk about that and more with Rose Hoban, the editor of North Carolina Health News.


Ben McKeown / For WUNC

North Carolina reported its first two COVID-19 deaths Wednesday as local governments ordered their residents to stay at home to slow the spread of the virus.

Gov. Roy Cooper issued a statement saying the coronavirus-related deaths were a person from Cabarrus County and another person from Virginia who was traveling through the state. The Cabarrus County patient was over age 70 with underlying conditions, while the Virginia patient was over 60, according to the release, which did not include further details about them.

Lively, vocal, and strong, Terence was born on January 21, 2020 to parents Rupillia (Rupi) and Gordian. Rupi was born in 1999 and is little sister to Jovian, star of the Kratt brother's beloved PBS show "Zoboomafoo," who was five years her senior.
Duke Lemur Center

The Duke Lemur Center announced not one, but two new births of the endangered species.

The infants were born January 21 and January 22 and are growing strong, according to the center. The babies were named Terence, pictured above, and Didius, pictured below.

Gov. Roy Cooper and members of the North Carolina Coronavirus Task Force will hold a briefing on COVID-19 updates. Watch live here starting at 2 p.m.

Pixabay

Who are we when faced with widespread contagion? Disease and humanity’s varied responses to sickness are on full-display in cinema – from zombie flicks to documentaries that help deepen our understanding of epidemics in the real world.  

The COVID-19 triage tent next to the UNC Rex Hospital emergency department.
Jason deBruyn / WUNC

Hospitals across North Carolina don't have a large amount of excess capacity to handle what they expect will be an onslaught of COVID-19 patients in the coming few weeks.

Even as they postpone elective surgeries, set up outdoor triage tents, and ramp up staffing levels, there's a concern that coronavirus patients will overwhelm the health care system.

Album cover for Jonathan Wilson's 'Dixie Blur'
BMG/Bella Union Records

North Carolina native Jonathan Wilson has come home on his new record Dixie Blur.  The long-time California resident was talking to Steve Earle at a session of the live-music radio program E-Town when Earle suggested he take his latest batch of songs to Nashville to record with live musicians.  On past efforts, Wilson often worked alone in his studio outside of Los Angeles, playing all the instruments himself.

The Statue of Minerva on the campus of UNC Greensboro
Courtesy of UNC Greensboro

While colleges and universities across North Carolina move classes online, administrators are also dealing with the complications that come with reducing on-campus operations.

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